It is easy to find excuses in your exercising schedule. You have real intentions to work out, but excuses are so easy to find – “I am so tired,” or "I am very busy." Having the right attitude plus some reminders can help you stay on track. In this article, we will list 10 steps you must do to maintain your fitness goals.
1. Do it for yourself – Research show that people who are "externally motivated” don’t stick with it. These people hit the gym so that they will look good at a particular occasion such as a class reunion or a birthday party. Conversely, people who are "internally motivated - those who exercise because they love it, are the ones who achieve their fitness goals.
2. Take baby steps – You will never try to run 10 miles on the first day, right? If you will do too much too soon, you will end up sore, injured, and discouraged. Take it easy when you’re just starting. For instance, you can run a quarter of a mile in the first week. When you find that easy, you can take it to the next level.
3. Mix it up – You may try to do different types of workouts to make things interesting and to be able to exercise different muscle groups. If you exercise using the elliptical machine, hop on to the stair climber for some cardio. Also, when you strength-train, switch between machines and free weights. You do not have to change your entire routine every week, but you may shift it around a little.
4. Don’t be your own drill sergeant – Half of the people who are starting a new exercise program ditch it in the first year. The reason is because they cannot keep up the boot camp pace they have forced on themselves. It is better to work within your limits, then gradually increase your pace.
5. Bring a friend – When your inner demons start persuading you to hit the couch and not the treadmill, a workout partner can help steer you back in the right direction. It is easier to bail out on the gymnasium than on the friend who is waiting for you there. Also, studies show that you will work out longer when you bring a partner along.
6. Show the clock who’s boss – Health experts suggest a minimum of 150 minutes of exercise a week (30 minutes per day, five times a week), plus weight training for at least twice a week. Cannot find room in your busy schedule? Take a closer look. If you cannot go to the gym because it is too late, keep a set of weights at home. If you cannot do 30 minutes per day, break exercise sessions into 10 or 15-minute bursts.
7. Live in the present – So what if you did not go to the gym for one week and consumed a pint of ice cream? Leave the guilt in the past. You have a chance to return to your routine today.
8. Keep it real – You are not going to take off 30 pounds in a week. In the beginning, aim for something that’s you think is achievable. Then, you can go from there. Increase your workout from two to three days a week, or you may exercise for 15 minutes longer each time.
9. Track it – Keep a fitness journal or you can use an app to monitor your progress. Track how far you run, walk, how heavy the weights you lift, and how many calories you burn.
10. Celebrate! – It will take weeks to see real changes. Even a pound of weight you lose or a pound of muscle you gain is valid reason for you to rejoice and to reward yourself. Go out with your friends, or buy yourself a new pair of jeans.